Georgia has asked China to use its influence to push for a resolution
to a territorial flare-up with Russia. Georgian troops have pulled out
of the breakaway province of South Ossetia after being overwhelmed by
Russian forces. Daniel Schearf reports from Beijing.
Georgia's ambassador to China, Zaza Begashvili, met with China's foreign minister to seek support in the dispute with Russia.
Afterwards, Ambassador Begashvili held a briefing for a small group of foreign and Chinese journalists.
would not say how the Chinese responded to the call for help. But,
flanked by several embassy staff and supporters wearing red arm bands
that read "Stop Russia!" he said he hoped China, as a great power,
would make the right conclusion.
He says he is sure that China
recognizes Georgia's borders, that it is as an independent state, and
that it is a member of the United Nations. He says he is sure that
China, as a member of the U.N. Security Council, will express its
opposition to this aggression against an independent state.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang issued a statement during the
weekend saying the conflict should be resolved peacefully through
The statement joined the United States and other countries in calling for an immediate cease-fire.
between Georgian and Russian troops erupted after Georgian soldiers
entered the breakaway province of South Ossetia last week to try to
Russia counter-attacked, driving Georgian troops out and bombing another separatist province - Abkhazia.
President George Bush condemned Russia for what he called a
"disproportionate" response and spreading the conflict outside South
Bush made the comments while in Beijing for the
Summer Olympics and after meeting with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir
Putin, who was also in Beijing for the games.
The conflict has not prevented athletes from Georgia or Russia from competing in the Olympics.
national Olympic Committees, very much in the spirit of the games,
continue with sport," said International Olympic Committee spokeswoman
Georgia is a U.S. ally and sent soldiers to Iraq
in support of the U.S.-led invasion. The United States is airlifting
those troops back to Georgia, sparking bitter criticism from Prime
Moscow says more than 2,000 people have been
killed in fighting this past week, but the figures have not been
South Ossetia broke away from Georgia in the early 1990s and allied itself with Russia.